What do I need to put in my wedding invitations? A question I get all the time. The answer is simple…whatever information your guests need to enjoy the amazing wedding day or wedding weekend you have planned for them!
The wedding invitation relays important information to your guest including the name or names of the host of the wedding, the name of the bride and groom, the wedding date, ceremony time, and ceremony location. If the ceremony and reception are in the same location, include “reception to follow” or similar language.
If you are not including reception information on the invitation, you may also include a dress code such as “black tie” or “black tie invited” at the bottom right corner.
Do not include a wedding website or wedding registry on the invitation. Do not include response information such as a response URL, phone number, or email address.
The Reception Card
If your reception is being held at a different location than the ceremony, then include a reception card. The reception card contains the reception location and reception start time. If you are having a cocktail hour, then use the start of the cocktail hour as your reception start time. You should also provide the address of the reception.
If you are not including reception information on the invitation, and therefore you did not include dress code on the invitation, you might also include that on the reception card on the bottom right corner.
It is acceptable to include your wedding website on the reception card.
You may also include that transportation between the ceremony and/or designated hotel and the reception will be provided.
Finally, it is a good idea to include parking information for the reception, such as “complimentary valet parking” or “complimentary parking.”
Do not include your wedding registry on your reception card.
After about 450 invitation wedding invitation orders, I’ve designed only a handful of directions cards, which provide directions to the ceremony, reception site, or hotel. Most couples assume their guests have GPS or google maps to get them between the various locations. If you do include directions, list directions from major cities or highways to the ceremony, and from the ceremony to the reception.
If you have a fare number of out of town guests, reserving a block of rooms at a nearby hotel (or two) is a good idea. On the accommodations card you would list the hotel, hotel address, hotel reservations phone number and/or URL. The hotel will likely give you a deadline for reservations and a room block code for your guests to reference, so include that as well. If you are providing transportation between the hotel and the ceremony or reception, make note of that. It is okay to include your wedding website on the accommodations card, and is a good idea if your hotel information is also on your wedding website. Do not include your wedding registry on your accommodations card.
Often couples combine the Accommodations card and Details card. The details card may include the hotel information, as well as other information such as the time and location of an after-party, brunch, transportation and parking details, or travel agent recommendations. Wedding registry information should not appear anywhere in your invitation suite. However, if you must, include your wedding registry on your details card.
Response Card/Response Envelope
Response cards and envelopes are not negotiable. They are a must! The response card ask guests to reply to your wedding invitation, by a specific date, with the following information: name, whether they are attending, and if necessary, their meal choice. Some couples also use this card to ask guests whether they are attending an after-party, a brunch, using transportation, or their hotel name.
The respond envelope is pre-printed and pre-stamped, with the host’s name and address.
Invitations are mailed in a mailer envelope with the guest’s names and address, and stamped with appropriate postage.
Some couples elect for an inner envelope, printed with the guests names only. This envelope may be lined and is not sealed.
Once you have an idea of exactly what you want to include in your wedding invitation suite, the fun begins. Designing these cards to compliment one another will not only give your guests the information they need, but a presentation they will not forget!